Opera Memphis Presents Die Fledermaus with a Memphis Twist
Everyone in Opera Memphis' production of Die Fledermaus has an agenda, and when they all collide on stage, the results are hilarious.
Die Fledermaus is the suggestively comedic story of large-scale payback for a year's old practical joke. Having been abandoned drunk on a park bench by his friend Eisenstein years before, Dr. Falke decides to get his revenge by convincing Eisenstein (who should have turned himself in to the local jail) to come with him to a party with ballerinas and champagne baths. At the party, Eisenstein is confronted by all sorts of people he wasn't expecting to see (like his wife).
Opera Memphis gave their production of Strauss'19th century a bit of a Memphis twist. In the first, act when Alfred is showing off his Italian language skills, one of the words he uses is "Grisanti's". And during the second act, which is set at a party, students from the Stax Academy choir flooded the stage and sang a scene-stealing medley of "There is a Balm in Gilead" and the "Theme from Shaft" acapella.
While the entire cast was fantastic, Elizabeth Reiter stood out as Adele the chambermaid. She was a spitfire on stage, expressive and feisty, but with a lovely voice and a wonderful sense of physical comedy. Kristin Vienneau brought plenty of swagger to her role as the wealthy, constantly bored Prince Orlofsky.
Opera Memphis' version of Die Fledermaus is sung in English, which makes it easy to follow, but there are subtitles above the stage just in case.
There's a second performance of Die Fledermaus on Tuesday night at the Germantown Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $45 – $60 each.